QPR’s intercontinental lineup

Looking at the players that have arrived at Loftus Road in the last couple of seasons, it’s easy to wonder how QPR can find themselves at the bottom end of the Premier League.

The R’s bought their ticket back to England’s top flight in 2011 by impressively clinching the Championship title.  Situated in the heart of the capital, the club already offered an attractive proposition to foreign stars wanting to indulge in the London lifestyle.  The addition of top flight football meant that that QPR could begin to recruit players of a much higher calibre.

This summer, however, saw the club add to their multinational squad by bringing in players of six different continents.  The first to arrive was captain of the All Whites, Ryan Nelsen, who joined after a brief spell at Tottenham.  Samba Diakite signed a permanent deal with the club on the same day, having been on loan at Loftus Road during the second half of last season.  He would meet up again with fellow Africans Adel Taarabt (Morocco) and Armand Traore (Senegal).  A week later, Mark Hughes returned to his old club Manchester United to bring in South Korea legend Park Ji-Sung, who he would go on to make his captain. 

The signing of Canada international Junior Hoilett from Blackburn was a huge boost to QPR’s attacking options, with the forward still managing to score seven goals and make six assists in the season Rovers went down.  A couple of big-name Europeans also joined during the summer.  Former Portugal international Jose Bosingwa made the short trip from Chelsea on a free transfer, having been signed by the Blues for over £16 million in 2008, whilst Spanish midfielder Esteban Granero arrived from La Liga champions Real Madrid. 

With Brazilians being known for their unbelievable skills and flair, the R’s signed two of them in preparation for another season in the Premier League.  The two players in question, however, were recruited to shore up the team’s defence.  Full-back Fabio da Silva was signed from Manchester United on a season-long loan, whilst compatriot Julio Cesar was brought in to protect the QPR goal.  The acquisition of the Brazilian international goalkeeper was one that baffled many, with the club having signed Rob Green from West Ham only the previous month.  The last player to be brought in at Loftus Road during the transfer window was deadline day arrival Stephane Mbia, with the signing of the Cameroonian international defender meaning that the club currently have players of four African countries in their first team squad. 

Overall, QPR recruited 12 players during the 2012 summer transfer window, with at least one representative of not just six different countries, but continents.  Granted, a lot of these players were already plying their trade in England when they were signed, but this is still an amazing feat.  Even more so considering that there are only seven generally recognised continents, with those including the inhospitable Antarctica.

Having narrowly avoided the drop last season, Mark Hughes will be hoping that his globetrotters have what it takes to keep his side in the Premier League.